Denver resident Matt Updike recently qualified to compete in the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing, September 6-17, as a member of the US Paralympic Cycling Team. While he”s been on the US Team for several years it”s his first time qualifying for a Paralympic Games. Although making the team was a tremendous accomplishment in itself, Matt can use your help and support down the home stretch toward his goal in China. “In order to help Matt perform his best in China we”ve decided to have a fundraiser so he can have the proper equipment and training needed to bring home a medal” hopefully one that”s gold.” said Andrew Toole, owner of Scruffy Murphy”s ” “Having the best when it comes to things such as wheels, tires, components, etc. and being able to afford to have sufficient time to train can make a huge difference in results and we want to give Matt his best shot at that gold.” The fundraiser for Matt will be Thursday, August 7 at Scruffy Murphy”s, 2030 Larimer Street, Denver. Folks interesting in helping can write a tax deductible check to: US Handcycling. “US Handcycling (501c3 non-profit) has been a long time supporter of mine,” said Matt, “It is a great organization that”s involved in putting on elite handcycle races as well as grass roots efforts such as getting kids with disabilities and newly injured people into handcycling.” If you can”t attend the fun at Scruffy Murphy”s but would still like to support Matt and US Handcycling please go to www.ushandcycling.org where you can make a donation online easily with your credit card. Born in 1971 in Syracuse, New York, Matt was injured in an automobile accident in the Fall of 1997 that left him paralyzed from the chest down, however, Matt immediately made his way back to skiing and cycling, his two passions prior to the accident. Matt began racing on the handcycling circuit in 2000 and showed dramatic improvement in a short time. He went from finishing near the back in his first season, to a National Time Trial Title and a Bronze Medal at the 2002 IPC World Championships in Germany. Through continued resolve and hard work Matt has become a dominate force in his race and has won multiple National Championships in the past few years and was most recently a member of Team MasterCard ” a select international group of handcyclists chosen to participate in events/races around the World. Matt”s speed often takes him first across the finish lines, but he also has a great deal of endurance. He proved this when he brook the 24 hour distance World Record, riding his handcycle over 463 km in 24 hours through the Dutch countryside. Andre Toole commented on Matt”s fortitude, “He is a real inspiration, he works-out every day and is built like a brick-shithouse; than he”ll take off on a Saturday for a 50 mile ride! Besides training and racing, Matt is currently working a residential mortgage banker with Universal Lending Corp (mupdike@ulc.com www.denverloanracer.com). He enjoys volunteering at Craig Hospital as a peer counselor and with Adaptive Adventures helping kids get into handcycling. The August 7th fundraiser at Scruffy Murphy”s, 2030 Larimer Street, Denver 80205 (303-291-6992) runs from 6-8pm. $20 includes free drinks, etc. Tax deductible donations to Matt c/o U.S. Handcycling are greatly appreciated.

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